George Orwell on Writing

While this is not directly from Orwell, it’s from his “Politics and the English Language” and it landed in my RSS reader yesterday, so I’m sharing it with you.

From George Orwell: 12 Writing Tips:

A scrupulous writer, in every sentence that he writes, will ask himself at least four questions, thus:

  1. What am I trying to say?
  2. What words will express it?
  3. What image or idiom will make it clearer?
  4. Is this image fresh enough to have an effect?

And he will probably ask himself two more:

  1. Could I put it more shortly?
  2. Have I said anything that is avoidably ugly?

Interesting tips and worth remembering.

And, yes, yes, I know I need to heed the advice as well.

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